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Ahead of the Russian presidential elections, a frantic drive is underway to raise turnout

Putin’s victory is all but guaranteed. But if elected with slumping numbers then his vision—and personal security—will be at risk once he steps aside

By Maria Antonova  

An election campaign billboard in Novosibirsk. Photo: Kirill Kukhmar/Tass/PA Images

Descend into the Moscow metro these days and you will hear a new sound cutting through the familiar din of commuters chattering and trains humming through tunnels. The announcement over the speaker reminds the subway’s millions of daily users that 18th March is an important date: the election of the Russian president. Stickers inside the train cars tell out-of-towners that the opportunity to vote in the capital is just a click away on a government services website: an unprecedented…

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